Smoking And Something Else arose out my researches into the anti-smoking industry and the other causes of lung cancer and other forms of cancer, the ones which the "lifestyle academics" never mention.
Over the past few years I have published very little; most of my recent work has been related to researching for a music database, which for me has been a curiously innocuous though strangely satisfying past-time. In the Summer of 2008 I decided to scan some old photographs; taking them off my top shelf and dusting them down, I found three of Simon Wolff, so thought I would send him the originals.
As far as I recall, I met Simon Wolff three times. The first time was at a conference organised by FOREST in March 1992; then I went down to his laboratory to interview him. Finally I ran into him at Victoria Station sometime later. In Smoking And Something Else... I refer to him as Professor Simon Wolff. I think I was introduced to him as such by Chris Tame; I was informed recently that he was not a full professor. After publication I sent him a copy or two of the pamphlet; I can't recall his reaction, but from the memory of our meeting at Victoria it was obviously favourable. He never mentioned that he was not a Professor but I have no recollection that he ever told me he was; probably he didn't mention my error out of politeness. From what I recall of him that was one of his most obvious traits. I have no doubt either that he was also right with regard to the link between air pollution and lung and other cancers.
When I looked him up on the Internet to see if he was still at University College London, I was saddened and shocked in equal measure to learn that he was dead, and had in fact died as long ago as 1995. I sent the photographs to the Simon Wolff Charitable Foundation, an organisation set up in his memory by his widow, and in which his spirit lives on. After entering into some correspondence with the Trust's Chairman, I dug out Smoking And Something Else... and The Doll's House... and scanned them too. [Later, I added a collection of documents].
These publications were produced originally using Ventura Publisher, a program that has long been consigned to the software graveyard. That would have been no obstacle to resetting them in MicroSoft Word, but I was unable to locate the original files, and had, uncharacteristically, deleted them. I have never been a great fan of the pdf format, but I've begun to warm to it.
Although the actual quality of the scans is good, the act of shoving the pamphlets under the scanner coupled with my poor manual dexterity has resulted in pages of various sizes; this printing of the front cover of The Doll's House was actually light green, though you wouldn't think so from the scan! But, ultimately, at the end it is content rather than presentation which is important in works such as these.
The above blurb was originally published on my main website August 28, 2008 when a scan of this pamphlet was published in compressed format.
February 20, 2010
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